Pre-order the Sony WH-1000XM4 Noise-Canceling Wireless Headphones

Look out Bose 700s — Sony’s taking their already acclaimed WH-1000XM3 noise-canceling headphones and bringing an array of small but important upgrades to the table, culminating in the upcoming release of the WH-1000XM4s.

Amongst these improvements are:

  • Better comfort — Sony has slightly increased the width of the earcups, added a bit more cushioning to the headband and ear padding, slightly changed the outside dimensions of the headphones, and shaved off a bit of weight, all resulting in a comfier fit.
  • Improved noise cancelation — Two microphones built into each earcup capture ambient noise that is sent to the headphones’ proprietary QN1 noise canceling processor to masterfully eliminate outside noise in real time. Now that system is also being backed by a new Bluetooth Audio SoC (System on Chip) and a new algorithm to adjust this noise cancelation on the fly, at over 700 times a second.
  • Real-time upscaling of music tracks — Using a pair of technologies they call “Edge-AI” and “DSEE (Digital Sound Enhancement Engine) Extreme”, these headphones dynamically rebuilds audio lost during digital compression — like you sometimes get with music streaming services — for a full-fidelity experience. It even recognizes instruments, genres, and more to accomplish this.
  • Smart listening technology — If you’re listening to something when you happen to see a friend walk by and start talking to them, the headphones will recognize this and stop the music so you can hold a short conversation without having to fumble with controls. The headphones also learn over time how to handle the various environments you tend to use them in, constantly fine-tuning your listening experience by adjusting ambient sound settings.
  • Proximity and acceleration sensors — The headphones use these sensors to detect whether you’re wearing them or not, automatically pausing the music when you take the headphones off to 1) preserve battery life, and 2) offer seamless stop-and-start playback.

There are a number of other advancements under the hood, almost too many to mention here. You can read all about them on the official page or check out the press release to learn more.

The Sony WH-1000XM4s release on August 18th, 2020 and can pre-ordered in black or silver for $350.